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Apple iPad Air 2

Apple iPad Air 2

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90 Engadget Score
The best in its category. We highly recommend it.
90

The best in its category. We highly recommend it.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Engadget Review

The iPad Air 2 is Apple's most powerful tablet yet, and is incredibly thin and light. It's a solid upgrade over last year's Air, and should definitely be one of your top tablet considerations.

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Pros
  • Beautiful, thin aluminum design
  • Incredibly powerful A8X chip
  • Touch ID included
  • Upgraded camera
Cons
  • Battery life could be better
  • Some will miss the mute switch
90 Engadget Score
The best in its category. We highly recommend it.
90

The best in its category. We highly recommend it.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Scores

Engadget

90
 

User Reviews

90
mbriggs
The iPad Air 2 is the best content consumption tablet on the market today. It's...read more
100
gigathlete
Best tablet I have ever used! iOS 9 brings great improvements and makes this...read more
90
GF
This is without doubt the best tablet I have ever used, however there are some...read more
Write a Review

Score Breakdown

 
93
Average user Score
 
90
mbriggs
11.26.15
The iPad Air 2 is the best content consumption tablet on the market today. It's combination of size, weight and performance are almost unparalleled. The display is super bright and crisp. The processor is fast and doesn't seem to slow down regardless of however many apps that are open. All Apple products are very easy to use, even to someone who has never picked up one before. They just seem to "make sense".
 
100
gigathlete
10.02.15
Best tablet I have ever used! iOS 9 brings great improvements and makes this iPad even more of a workhorse.
 
90
GF
03.10.15
This is without doubt the best tablet I have ever used, however there are some faults...I could write a review listing specs and features about it iPad, but you might as well read any iSheep "review" which just lists the specs, instead I will give you my honest opinion about the product in particular what features I find annoying.Don't misunderstand me, I think this tablet is fantastic, but there are a few things that frustrate me.Features:missing mute switch - i know you can do it on the software, but I prefer the security of the switchFor some reason I can get more app icons on one page on my iPhone 6 than on my significantly bigger screened iPad... Maybe its time to make the tablet waterproofSpeakers only on one endalso speakers vibrate the metal caseDisplay:The pixel density is not as great as a lot of competing tabletsIt is still fantastic though with its laminated screen and anti glare coating, so well done.Battery life:I would be willing to lose a mm or so in thickness to get a few hours extra battery lifeNo better than last years battery life (although the battery this year is smaller)Ease of Use:maybe a bit too simpleStorage Capacity:Don't go for the 16GB model, the next one up is 64GB! Why they even bother with that small a size I don't know!Design and Form Factor:Why is the home button not central?!?!?!?!Portability:So thin and light, nothing bad!Durability:I am afraid to keep it out a case...Not sure which iPad to get? This quiz will tell you what is best for you: www.thamply.com/quizzes/ipad-finder/Its a multiple choice quiz that asks you questions about what you require in an iPad.
 
100
infofarmer
03.08.15
A gadget unicorn - Engadget
 
90
sakura446
02.21.15
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
 
90
StewieMonSta
02.20.15
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
 
90
s3nnh3is3r
12.31.14
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
 
90
JohnMaclin
12.28.14
I purchased the new iPad Air 2, in Gold, 16GB capacity about a week ago at Walmart, and I'd like to give a few impressions of the hardware and software here. I had particularly high hopes for this device, and have been waiting a long time to buy one; after holding a friend's brand new 64GB version, and being really impressed by how light the device seemed, I bought one for myself! :)A little bit of background: My other experience with tablets involves a 2013 Nexus 7 that I use at least weekly; an Asus Transformer Pad, with a Tegra 3 1920x1080 screen, an Acer android tablet whose screen cracked 3 months after purchase; a Kindle Fire HD; I have also used both an iPad 2 and an iPad Mini (original) off and on, but never owned an iPad before. I use an iPhone 5.The device is extremely light and thin. Its shocking, honestly - its far lighter than my chunky Kindle Fire HD 7. I bought it in gold (because why not live a little?) and it looks really nice. It feels like a premium device. The back is metal, which can be a little cold to the touch, but is smooth and easy to hold. It does get tedious holding it up while lying in bed, however. Probably this is due part to the small side bezels; my palm or thumb was nearly always bumping the screen.The screen is gorgeous. Bright, easy to read, and I haven't no noticed any reflections on it yet, which is fantastic. Honestly, its beautiful. And it shows off photographs really really well. I haven't used it to take any pictures, and probably won't, so I can't really comment on that aspect.The software is good, but I was honestly expecting something noticeably better than iOS 8 on my iPhone, which just isn't the case. In fact, because of the animations, and the larger screen, it feels almost slower than my two year old iPhone.If I had to describe iOS on an iPad, its just iOS+ for an iPhone; just a '+' version. Or in Apple parlance, an 'S' version. Slightly superior, but not really. In terms of responding to my touches and taps, Safari as a browser just didn't quite get recognize maybe 75% of my taps the first four days before settling into getting 3/4 of them. So, using the web and the web browser is more frustrating. Because so many web sites are optimized for a mobile or iPhone version, its actually easier to browse on my phone.The processor is fast. But not significantly faster than my 2013 Nexus 7, so there isn't as much a difference as I thought there would be. Basically, the iPad has always been fast enough for me, and new android tablets are as well. I thought I would notice a difference, now that Apple has bumped the RAM to 2GB, but frankly, no. Its future proof, yes, but ... You won't notice the difference, either.Just to sum up my thoughts on the new iPad Air:Pros:Extremely thin and lightBeautiful hardware and softwareSo. Many. Apps.Lots of accessoriesCons:Even medium sound causes the whole device to buzz and vibrateNo way to have two accounts; I can't share this device with my significant other at all; no multiuser supportSlim bezels make it hard to hold without occasional errant tapsExpensiveNo widget apps - eg, weather, flipboard, buzzfeed on the home pagesI really wanted to like this device more than I do today. As is, I have an old MacBook that I'm going to keep browsing the web on, while I decide whether to return the iPad or not.Lastly, I suggest to but it at low price at: Goo.gl/GnCxZkThanks for reading!
 
100
mshulman
12.11.14
A gadget unicorn - Engadget
 
80
meringo
11.06.14
I got this iPad as a gift about a week now, coming from a Samsung Tab S 8.4... I had owned the iPad 4 previously, and really enjoyed it. I decided to sell that in favor of portability, since the 4 was heavy and had large bezels. The Tab S was AWESOME. Lightweight, best in class screen, and expandable memory. Then out of no where, I got an iPad Air 2.Physical Impressions:*The thing is as light as a feather. I really appreciate this, as it feels like I'm holding a smaller form factor tablet. *The extra thin design is nice, but not too much thicker than the Tab S. I was already accustom to thin. Apple isn't special.*The screen is quite nice, but I prefer the Tab S's deep blacks and beautiful color to this. Easily 2nd place looking at the tablet market as a whole. *Aluminum scratches easily. Right now I just have a smart cover and am terrified of setting this thing on it's backside. I know it looks nice, but I wish it was a different material....Performance:*NO complaints with the speed of this tablet. EVERYTHING opens as soon as I click it, and I have yet to encounter any sluggishness.*Gaming performance is AWESOME*iOS 8.1 is still buggy as hell. 3rd party keyboard apps remain almost entirely worthless because of this. The keyboard is still randomly dissapearing, often time will lock up for a good 5 seconds. upon opening or closing the keyboard...Other thoughts:I received the cellular model, and had no intentions to activate service. The person who bought the iPad for me thought I could take advantage of the added GPS chip (thoughtful!) Every minute or so I received a popup asking me if I would like to setup cell service, and I'd always click "later." the popup disregards whatever you are doing on the tablet and opens on the top layer of everything.... ALL DAY EVERYDAY. I called Apple to see if there was a way to turn off the prompt, and there isn't. The only way to get the popup to stop is to sign up for service. After review, I signed up for the free 200mb of T-mobile service in order to get rid of the pop-up. Only AFTER you select and sign up for a service are you able to turn off the cell radio.... what is wrong with Apple. What an oversight. Why are you forcing people to sign up for service from a 3rd party vendor - and remind you uncontrollably until you do. Overall, I firmly believe this is the best tablet out there. The hardware quality is wonderful, and the weight and thickness finally makes it more portable; there really isn't a reason to get the iPad mini anymore. Coming from Android, I miss some features.... like having more settings options in the drop down menu, be able to play any video or audio file, removable storage, and side by side apps (kudos to Samsung.) If you want those things, get a Tab S or consider the Nexus 9.I just sold my Tab S, and look forward to using my new iPad for years to come.